- The Washington Times - Thursday, November 1, 2018

Former President Obama on Thursday stepped into the midterm fight over insurance for sicker Americans, saying protections built into his signature health law are “absolutely at stake” on Election Day.

His successor, President Trump, has infuriated Democrats by claiming his party will do a better job of making sure people with pre-existing medical conditions can afford insurance.

Mr. Obama echoed their frustration, noting his 2010 Affordable Care Act forced insurers to cover people with pre- existing conditions and charge them the same premiums as healthy people.


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“While we’re talking about preexisting conditions, the ACA is the law that finally protected your coverage for preexisting conditions,” Mr. Obama tweeted. Those protections and your health care are absolutely at stake on Tuesday. Vote for Democrats who’ll protect them.”

Mr. Trump and his GOP allies tried and failed to repeal Obamacare in 2017. A House bill would have allowed states to charge people with pre-existing conditions more than healthy customers, if those sicker customers experienced a lapse in coverage. The state would be required to set up a high-risk pool or invisible risk-sharing program to help sicker people afford bills, though experts said those pools might not be adequately funded.



Democrats have pointed to those provisions as proof the GOP will attacks Obamacare’s protections again if given the chance.

And they point to the Trump administration’s refusal to defend the law against a state-driven lawsuit that argues Congress’ decision to gut penalties tied to Obamacare’s “individual mandate” makes the rest of the law invalid — including its protections for people with pre-existing conditions.

Republicans running for Congress say voters can count on them to structure a new program that’s more affordable than Obamacare and still protects the sick, yet Democrats argue the GOP hasn’t earned that trust.

“Elections matter. You have the power to protect a family’s health care,” Mr. Obama tweeted. “Make a plan, grab some friends, and vote.”

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